16 01, 2008

What is enlightenment?

January 16th, 2008|buddhism, channeling, love, non duality, Self, spirituality, wholeness|16 Comments

The following was a question received from Mary which is wonderful and brings a lot of common ideas out into the open:

Question: I’ve come across the topic of enlightenment so often lately that I’d like a clear perspective on it. I find the idea confusing because it seems to be a worthy aim for the spiritually focused, yet it is said that those who say they are enlightened are not, and others say that it is better to work for personal maturity rather than enlightenment. Others say that it’s no fun being enlightened, while others say it’s pure bliss. So what is it really? How to get there, what does an enlightened life look like in our here and now life?

The concept of enlightenment, I find with some humor, is one which is filled with much non-enlightened thought: that is, thought based in separation and ‘ego’. Firstly, the concept is a label for an experience decidedly without labels. It is an experience of utter freedom â???? but whatever thought you have of what enlightenment is will always be accumulated from others. It is again, something someone else tells you is a better way. (more…)

13 01, 2008

What is healing, exactly?

January 13th, 2008|black and white thinking, channeling, choices, love, Self, spirituality, suffering, transformation|14 Comments

Much of my exploration of love and spirituality has come directly from my own healing journey. I, like seemingly everyone, have had wounds from childhood that influence me seemingly all the time. In addition, I’ve had many physical maladies manifesting something going wrong internally. Right now I’m in a state of being unable to work or be active physically, because I get disoriented for hours if I do anything. Including getting groceries and household cleaning. Rather than getting disheartened, I’m using this for the gift that it is to do some inner household cleaning.

To honor this, I thought I’d share some channeling surrounding what healing actually is. Any similarities to actual persons in the examples are 100% not an accident. Nothing is!

On to the channeling…

Questions: What exactly is healing? How does one “do it”? It seems like a lot of times we think of healing as “getting over it”.

When we use the word ‘heal’ or ‘healing’, we are talking about allowing something to revert or assume its natural state. Most of you go through your lives with some part of you either physically or emotionally in a other than natural state. This creates conflicts and imbalances which allow you further opportunity for learning and growth. Healing, then, allows those parts of you to revert to their ‘normal’ state: A state of rest, a state without conflict, a state of peace.
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8 01, 2008

Letting go

January 8th, 2008|buddhism, love, non duality, Self, spirituality, wholeness|0 Comments

You may have noticed that amidst the bustle of the holiday season, it’s easy to forget the turning of the seasons. Beyond gift giving and family, we have a fundamental connection as living being to this earth, and its movements move us. The wintry season with long nights, hibernation and repose, offer us time to reflect, re-evaluate, and release. Without dark nights, we would not awaken to a day that is new and transformed from those in the past. Letting go is emphasized by nature in this season, and listening to the nourisher of life on this planet provides deep nourishment in itself.

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23 11, 2007

Breaking through the chains of identity

November 23rd, 2007|conflict, non duality, Self|7 Comments

I had a question recently asked of me, which is what this article is based on:

How do you form new identities when there are expectations other people place, in terms of maintaining an identity? How do you find ways of letting go to holding on to that and allowing more of yourself to come through?

To answer this, let’s first look at what identity is. The etymology of the word comes from the Latin words for “sameness” and “over and over’. This in itself gives a good picture of it – a fixated pattern or image that can be repeated over and over. It can be looked at as a temporary protection against the unknown. Where there is the dark unknown and the feeling of helplessness come from it, then terror appears, and so there is a desire to control that comes from this. Identity is the standard result.

Because of the nature of interconnection mentioned in previous articles, identities are not isolated towers etched in stone. Your identity depends on the interactions you have with others, particularly intimate relationships. The degree of ‘sameness’ and repetition of behavior in relationships creates safety and protection more firmly than any amount of home security. Conversely, when someone’s behavior and identity fluctuates without agreement from everyone involved, a sense of betrayal and threat is often the results. When you question your identity, ripples flow outward that invite everyone surrounding you to also question their own identity. For some, this is incredibly fearful. To real degree, this can feel if one’s life is about to end – because in some ways, it is.

Identity, therefore, is central to the perception of isolation and separateness that human beings are subject to. If you hardwire your perception of Self to be a fixed collection of thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, then you will automatically disconnect from all beings that are not this collection. You may see this in such actions as politics; the identity is so strong, so dependent on connections with others of like mind that the disconnect then it is quite likely that those on the ‘other side’ are disconnected from to such a degree that their humanness is no longer seen. When taken to its natural extreme, this can cause violence and wars.

The problems do not come from any idea of what you are, but always from what you are not. If you deny connections, whether to others or within yourself, you are in fact wielding a scalpel, surgically cutting yourself off from the universe. This is violence. This is an attack, both at the world and at the Self. There is no outward form of violence that does not directly come from this core split.

To work with this, we suggest an exercise adapted from Thich Naht Hahn :

When you meet something, instead of a label which implies separation such as ‘tree’, ‘house’, or ‘road’, state instead that you are what you see. ‘I am this’ is a good phrase, or a statement of ‘I am a tree’ when you meet one. Rather than this be something enforced on your mind, expand outward to breath in the essence of what you are seeing.

Another way to do this is via the practice of mindful eating. Your absolute interconnection is not simply with what you see, but everything that is connected to what you see as well. An example would be the eating of brown rice. (preferably organic!). As you are eating, feeling the soft fibers in your tongue, invite the perception that you are the rice, and that you are enjoying changing form to help preserve life. You are the plants in the field that produced this output. You are the workers that cultivated the food. You are the sunlight that gave life to this plant. You are the water that irrigated the field. You are the rain and sky that brought the rivers. You are the people that package and brought the rice to you. You are even the animals that ate from the field before it was cultivated. You are all that.

Imagine then, that with every bite you are taking, you are affirming your connection to the earth, the plants on it, the sun, the animals, and every human being interconnected on it. This connection is in every bite of food, and indeed in every breath you take. Living with this connection at a conscious level is an ever present source of joy.

In this exercise, the ‘who you are’ is absolutely inclusive, and thus without violence. There is nothing you are not, and thus nothing you have to use force to separate yourself from. This is where true power comes from. If you have difficulty feeling this connection in this exercise, then we suggest trying it again in a natural setting, where animals can be viewed. Animals naturally feel this interconnection as part of their way of being, and can be great teachers in this. Children can be as well.

‘Letting go of identity’ is therefore not a true letting go. There is in fact no need to let go of who you are â???? only to let go of the perception of what you are not. You may in fact be a professional, reliable person who doesn’t want to impose on others, but you may also be a human being who has pain inside and deserves the chance to make mistakes, get angry, and be wrong.

 

If you decide to undergo on the path of expanding your identity, take caution, for the ripples this path creates can create much reaction in others. In fact, we advocate asking those close to you for permission first, even if in your own mind or in a dream state. Leaving behind past shelters of identity is usually a terrifying undertaking, and it is good to prepare and gain support beforehand. But it is good to remember that it is always in the unknown that true experience of Love resides, and this is why terror is often experienced before Love is. And it is in the expansion of Self â???? not the destruction of it â???? that Love is experienced. Your awareness of identity can expand to where your identity is your family, the community, the earth, and the universe. This is in fact what is true at this very moment, and we invite you to rejoin with your birthright.

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11 10, 2007

Reconnecting to Your Source

October 11th, 2007|allowing, connection, Self, wholeness|2 Comments

All of us, each one of us, is connected to one another. We each are created from, formed of, and connected to the same genetic source material. This is such a universal truth that it appears in both religious literature and myth alike. The story of Genesis and the formation of us as humans is part of us, part of our heritage as a people, and the truth remains: we are connected, we are One.

Then why the pervasive feeling of separateness, of disconnection from where and how we began? Why can’t we feel connected to our source, connected to others and to the Universe, at all times?

The answer is both simple and complex: we chose the separation, each one of us, yet we can have that reconnection if we so desire.

Separation is a way of allowing us to become caught up in the illusions of the life experience so as to present ourselves and one another with growth opportunities. Simply put, we learn from interaction from one another, and if there was no interaction, we would not evolve. It is impossible to learn all there is about being human simply from interacting with the self.

We learn a great deal through conflict. Conflict arises from a feeling of disconnectedness, and without conflict there is often little impetus to interact and grow from that interaction. While it is certainly possible and often preferable to learn from places of joy, it is difficult for us to remain in that state long enough to allow the growth to permeate us; when in Joy we often are simply caught up in the wonder and beauty of it and neglect to utilize that time as well to grow and learn. It is a very human trait, then, to require conflict in order to grow.

That is not to say that conflict is desirable, simply that from it springs much to build a lifetime of evolution and growth.

While separation is part of the design of human evolution and growth, it certainly is not the natural state from whence we came, and often we feel a longing to return to that state of utter connectedness yet fee we have lost the way to get there.

It is one thing to say and acknowledge, “I am One with you, we are all One,” and it is quite another thing to hold that belief inside us, in our hearts and even down to a cellular level. How, then, to get there? How can we hold that knowingness inside us, so that it may be present to comfort us, to guide us, to allow us to remain connected with all that we are?

It is really quite simple.

All you need to do is to allow the connection.

“Allow the connection”? What does that mean, in real terms?

It means stepping into that place rather than forcing your way in. It means holding the idea of being connected to source at all times, holding it within you as a real possibility. It means, also, letting yourself deserve that reconnection.

Let’s talk for a moment about what we deserve. We all are here on this planet on a level playing field, meaning that we all, since we are of course connected and part of the One, deserving of the same experiences, the same opportunities. You likely believe this on various levels pertaining to human rights, civil rights, and the like. We are One. But going to you, yourself, thinking about only yourself, do you give yourself the same opportunities for joy and happiness that you allow for others? Or do you see yourself as perhaps having to work a little harder, a little longer, for the same growth that you fully believe others are deserving of?

Do you really believe that you deserve to be connected to your inner source?

If you are human, then you are deserving of the human experience. Period. And allowing a reconnection to our source is certainly and most positively part of the human experience.

Again, then, allowing the connection to Source means letting go of who you think you are and letting in all the myriad magical possibilities of who you could be. For all those possibilities are also You. You are far larger than you perceive. In fact, you are not only who you think you are and the millions of imagined possibilities of who you are, but you are also all the yous that ever have been, all the yous who ever existed in your imagination or otherwise, throughout your entire life. All those possibilities, whether real or imagined, are all a part of the larger You that is. And when you acknowledge all those possibilities, acknowledge your Self in all its grand bigness and perfection, you allow connection to Source, for it is through the You that is that your connection exists.

It is through the You That Is that your connection to your Source exists.

And it is by allowing and acknowledging all your myriad possibilities, tens of thousands upon millions of them, that you regain your connection to the One that is you.